|Publication number||US8223723 B2|
|Application number||US 12/495,147|
|Publication date||Jul 17, 2012|
|Filing date||Jun 30, 2009|
|Priority date||Mar 22, 2007|
|Also published as||CN101730979A, EP2106637A2, US8228858, US8824420, US20080232325, US20090274110, US20100002657, WO2008126655A2, WO2008126655A3|
|Publication number||12495147, 495147, US 8223723 B2, US 8223723B2, US-B2-8223723, US8223723 B2, US8223723B2|
|Inventors||Koon Hoo Teo, Neelesh B. Mehta, Jinyun Zhang|
|Original Assignee||Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories, Inc.|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (37), Non-Patent Citations (5), Referenced by (6), Classifications (26), Legal Events (1)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This application is a continuation of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/953,452, “Method and System for Generating Antenna Selection Signals in Wireless Networks,” filed on Dec. 10, 2007, by Mehta et al.
This invention relates generally to generating antenna selection signals in wireless communication networks, and more particularly to selecting antennas in transceivers where the number of RF chains is less than the number of antennas.
In a wireless communication network, such as the 3rd generation (3G) wireless cellular communication standard and the 3GPP long term evolution (LTE) standard, it is desired to concurrently support multiple services and multiple data rates for multiple users in a fixed bandwidth channel. One scheme adaptively modulates and codes symbols before transmission based on current channel estimates. Another option available in LTE, which uses orthogonal frequency division multiplexed access (OFDMA), is to exploit multi-user frequency diversity by assigning different sub-carriers or groups of sub-carriers to different users or UEs (user equipment). The system bandwidth can vary, for example, from 1.25 MHz to 20 MHz. The system bandwidth is partitioned into a number of subcarriers, e.g., 1024 subcarriers for a 5 MHz bandwidth.
The following standardization documents are incorporated herein by reference: 36.211, 3rd Generation Partnership Project; Technical Specification Group Radio Access Network; Physical Channels and Modulation (Release 8), v 1.0.0 (2007-03); R1-01057, “Adaptive antenna switching for radio resource allocation in the EUTRA uplink,” Mitsubishi Electric/Nortel/NTT DoCoMo, 3GPP RAN1#48, St. Louis, USA; R1-071119, “A new DM-RS transmission scheme for antenna selection in E-UTRA uplink,” LGE, 3GPP RAN1#48, St. Louis, USA; and “Comparison of closed-loop antenna selection with open-loop transmit diversity (antenna switching within a transmit time interval (TTI)),” Mitsubishi Electric, 3GPP RAN1#47bis, Sorrento, Italy. According to the 3GPP standard, the base station is enhanced, and is called the “Evolved NodeB” (eNodeB).
In order to further increase the capacity of a wireless communication system in fading channel environments, multiple-input-multiple-output (MIMO) antenna technology can be used to increase the capacity of the system without an increase in bandwidth. Because the channels for different antennas can be quite different, MIMO increases robustness to fading and also enables multiple data streams to be transmitted concurrently.
While MIMO systems perform well, they also can increase the hardware and signal processing complexity, power consumption, and component size in transceivers. This is due in part to the fact that each receive antenna requires a receive radio frequency (RF) chain, which typically comprises a low noise amplifier, a frequency down-converter, and an analog to digital converter. Similarly, each transmit antenna element requires an RF chain that comprises a digital to analog converter, a frequency up-converter, and a power amplifier.
Moreover, processing the signals received in spatial multiplexing schemes or with space-time trellis codes requires receivers where the complexity can increase exponentially as a function of the number of antenna.
Antennas are relatively simple and cheap, while RF chains are considerably more complex and expensive. Antenna selection reduces some of the complexity drawbacks associated with MIMO systems. Antenna selection reduces the hardware complexity of transmitters and receivers by using fewer RF chains than the number of antennas.
In antenna selection, a subset of the set of available antennas is adaptively selected by a switch, and only signals for the selected subset of antennas are connected to the available RF chains for signal processing, which can be either transmitting or receiving. As used herein, the selected subset, in all cases, means one or more of all the available antennas in the set of antennas. Note, that invention also allows multiple subsets to be used for training. For example, there can be four antennas and one RF chain, or eight antennas and two RF chains, which includes four subsets.
Antenna Selection Signals
Pilot Tones or Reference Signals
In order to select the optimal subset of antennas, all channels corresponding to all possible transmit and receive antenna subsets need to be estimated, even though only a selected optimal subset of the antennas is eventually used for transmission.
This can be achieved by transmitting antenna selections signals, e.g., pilot tones, also called reference signals, from different antennas or antenna subsets. The different antenna subsets can transmit either the same pilot tones or use different ones. Let Nt denote the number of transmit antennas, Nr the number of receive antennas, and let Rt=Nt/Lt and Rr=Nr/Lr be integers. Then, the available transmit (receive) antenna elements can be partitioned into Rt (Rr) disjoint subsets. The pilot repetition approach repeats, for RtŚRr times, a training sequence that is suitable for an LtŚLr MIMO system. During each repetition of the training sequence, the transmit RF chains are connected to different subsets of antennas. Thus, at the end of the RtŚRr repetitions, the receiver has a complete estimate of all the channels from the various transmit antennas to the various receive antennas.
In case of transmit antenna selection in frequency division duplex (FDD) systems, in which the forward and reverse links (channels) are not identical, the receiver feeds back the optimal set of the selected subset of antennas to the transmitter. In reciprocal time division duplex (TDD) systems, the transmitter can perform the selection independently.
For indoor LAN applications with slowly varying channels, antenna selection can be performed using a media access (MAC) layer protocol, see IEEE 802.11n wireless LAN draft specification, I. P802.11n/D1.0, “Draft amendment to Wireless LAN media access control (MAC) and physical layer (PHY) specifications: Enhancements for higher throughput,” Tech. Rep., March 2006.
Instead of extending the physical (PHY) layer preamble to include the extra training fields (repetitions) for the additional antenna elements, antenna selection training is done by the MAC layer by issuing commands to the physical layer to transmit and receive packets by different antenna subsets. The training information, which is a single standard training sequence for a LtŚLr MIMO system, is embedded in the MAC header field.
OFDMA Structure in LTE
The basic uplink transmission scheme is described in 3GPP TR 25.814, v1.2.2 “Physical Layer Aspects for Evolved UTRA.” The scheme is a single-carrier transmission (SC-OFDMA) with cyclic prefix (CP) to achieve uplink inter-user orthogonality and to enable efficient frequency-domain equalization at the receiver side.
LTE Reference Signals
3GPP LTE envisages using two kinds of reference signals. Both the reference signals are transmitted in one or more of the long blocks (LB) of the TTI, or its short blocks, if available.
Data Modulation Reference Signals
The data modulation (DM) reference signal is transmitted along with data in the subcarriers assigned to the user equipment. These signals help the eNodeB (Base station) receiver to acquire an accurate estimate of the channel, and thereby coherently decode the received signal.
Broadband Sounding Reference Signals (SRS)
The broadband SRS is meant to help the eNodeB to estimate the entire frequency domain response of the uplink channel from the user to the eNodeB. This helps frequency-domain scheduling, in which a subcarrier is assigned, in principle, to the user with the best uplink channel gain for that subcarrier. Therefore, the broadband SRS can occupy the entire system bandwidth, e.g., 5 MHz or 10 MHz. Alternatives have also been proposed in which the broadband SRS occupies a fraction of the system bandwidth and is frequency hopped over multiple transmissions in order to cover the entire system bandwidth.
The objective of the invention is to provide training for joint antenna selection and resource block assignment. In a LTE network, different transmit antennas might be best for different resource blocks due to the wide network bandwidth.
Embodiments of the invention provide a solution for above-mentioned problem by transmitting broadband sounding reference signal (SRS) periodically. These broadband SRSs enable a base station to determine the entire frequency response of the channel of each of the subset of antennas.
Embodiments of the invention describe a method for joint resource blocks assignment and antenna selection (AS) in a wireless communication network, the network comprising user equipment (UE), wherein the UE comprises a plurality of subsets of antennas, the UE is configured to transmit a sounding reference signal (SRS) from a subset of antennas at a time. The method transmits a first SRS from a first subset of antennas and a second SRS from a second subset of antennas. Upon receiving, in response to the transmitting of the first SRS and the second SRS, information related to an optimal subset of antennas, and information related to an optimal subset of resource blocks, the method transmits a data symbol from the optimal subset of antennas using the optimal resource block.
The embodiments of the invention provide a method and system for generating and transmitting antenna selection signals selection in wireless networks. More specifically, the invention can be used in transceivers where the number of RF chains is less than the number of antennas, e.g., one transmit RF chains for two transmit antennas, or two transmit RF chains for four transmit antennas. It should be understood that the receive antennas can also be coupled to correspondingly fewer receive RF chains. It should be noted that the techniques described herein can work with receivers that have only a single antenna. The invention is applicable to networks designed according to 3GPP, 4G cellular, WLAN, WiBro, WiMAX, and IEEE 802.20 standards.
If SBs are present, they are used for DM and broadband SRSs. If only LBs are present in the RB, then one or more of the LBs is used for the DM RS and broadband SRS. Multiple RBs can be assigned to an uplink user. These RBs can but need not be contiguous. Furthermore, the subcarriers that comprise an RB can be contiguous or distributed over the system bandwidth or a portion thereof.
The DM and broadband sounding reference signals can also be used for the purpose of antenna selection training. The DM/broadband RS and AS RS can be the same, it is only their use that differs. DM signals are used to demodulate the data in the other long blocks, while the AS RSs are used for channel estimation for the purpose of antenna selection. The use of the broadband SRS for antenna selection has the advantage of facilitating joint frequency domain scheduling and antenna selection. It should be noted, that channel estimation in a receiver is well known. It should be noted that the invention is not limited to a specific number of long and short blocks during the TTI. For clarity, the CPs are not shown in
The antenna selection signals according to one embodiment of the invention can use orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM).
To enable antenna selection for the uplink from user equipment (UE) to a base station (BS), the UE transmits DM RS or broadband SRSs from subsets of available transmit antennas. The BS estimates the channels and selects an optimal (best) subset of the transmit antennas. In case of an FDD system, the BS also feeds back information related to the selected subset of antennas to the UE. Then, the UE uses the selected transmit antennas for future transmissions to the BS. The selecting can be performed periodically, or on demand. In the later case, notification is required before training or selecting can commence. It should be noted, that the selection can be for the same antenna subset that was previously used. The selected antennas can also be used for receiving user data, which is well suited for a slow-varying TDD system in which the uplink and downlink channels are reciprocal.
Given that there are fewer RF chains than antennas, the pilot tones are transmitted by different sets of antennas using frequency division multiplexing (FDM) or code division multiplexing (CDM) in a time division multiplexed (TDM) manner, consistent with the basic RB structure shown in
In the description below, we first consider a UE with one RF chain and two transmit or receive antennas, and FDM pilot tones. These schemes are then extended for use with CDM pilot tones. Next, we consider two RF chains and four antennas for both FDM and CDM pilot tones. Further extensions based on this description are also possible. We then consider schemes that differentiate between the selected subset of antennas, i.e., the ones that are transmitting or have transmitted data currently, and the other unselected antennas. The differentiation lies in how often the AS RS is transmitted by selected and unselected antenna subsets.
As defined herein, the selected antenna subset most recently transmitted user data, while the unselected antenna subsets usually only transmit the antenna selection signals. As per an embodiment of the invention, the unselected antenna subsets transmit the AS signals less frequently than the selected antenna subset.
We consider two cases of antenna training: antenna training and selection occur within one TTI, and antenna training and selection occur between multiple TTIs.
For each of these cases, we describe periodic and on demand antenna selection. We describe the use of various alternative pilot tones for antenna selection, such as the data modulation (DM) RSs, broadband SRSs, or hybrid schemes.
In the examples below for UE with one transmit RF chain and two antennas (Tx1 and Tx2), we assume that one block (SB1) is used to transmit data, control and DM signals, while the another (SB2) is used to transmit periodically AS signals for the slot structure with six LBs and two SBs. For the 1 ms TTI that includes LBs (and no SBs), two LBs, e.g., LB4 and LB11, are used to transmit the DM and broadband SRSs. The BS estimates the channel from the reference signals, and makes an antenna selection decision accordingly. For the purpose of this description, we assume that there is a delay between BS notification of the selection and the actual switching in the UE.
Training when Antenna Selection Occurs within a TTI
Using DM RSs
As shown in
As shown in
For the 1 ms TTI, which includes 3 slots with 2 LBs used for DM signals, the UE begins by transmitting most of the RB, including all the LBs (1-3, 5-14) for data and LB4 for DM signal. However, the AS signal of the RB is transmitted from an unselected antenna in LB11.
As shown, the AS signal 202 can be a “low overhead” signal because it either uses fewer reference signal carriers, e.g., half the number as shown in
The BS selects 210 a subset (one in the case of two antennas) of antennas using the DM signal 201 for Tx1 and the AS signal 202 for Tx2. Some time after making the selection, the BS feeds back the selection, e.g., “use Tx2 205,” to the UE. The UE switches to the selected transmit antenna Tx2 for the next TTI after receiving the feedback. As shown in
Using Broadband SRSs
As shown in
As shown in
This enables the BS to estimate the broadband frequency response of the channels for both antennas. Using the CQI signals for training and selection has the additional advantage of enabling joint resource block carrier frequency assignment and antenna selection, which improves the efficiency of frequency domain scheduling. The UE can switch transmit antennas as well as frequencies used in the RB.
On-Demand Adaptive Antenna Training and Selection
Instead of transmitting the AS signals periodically, the AS signals can be transmitted only when the performance of the current antenna falls below a desired threshold as shown in
After a decision has been made, by either the UE or the BS, to perform antenna training and selection, using e.g., a selection trigger signal 401, the UE transmits the AS signals during the next TTI, by using either the AS signal 202 or the CQI signals as described above. Then, the BS can estimate the channels for both antennas, select an antenna 210, and send the decision to use Tx2 205 back to the UE. In this case, the performance improves when the UE explicitly informs the BS about the form of the AS signal.
Training when Antenna Selection Occurs Between TTIs
We now describe the corresponding cases when antenna training and selection occurs between TTIs and not within a TTI as described above. Selecting between TTIs further simplifies the implementation complexity at the UE, with some extra delay in selecting the optimal set of antennas.
Using Entire TTIs
However, the transmission with the unselected antenna Tx2 needs to be done with a conservative lower rate MCS because the channel for Tx2 may not be known at either the BS or UE. The RB that is transmitted with the unselected antenna includes data and pilot tones. While the initial transmission with the unselected antenna requires a conservative choice of the MCS, previous channel estimates coupled with the current channel estimate can be used to obtain a more reliable, and perhaps less conservative MCS choice for sequent transmissions of RBs from the unselected antenna.
On-Demand Adaptive Training
In one embodiment of the invention, the UE reverts back to Tx1 for the sequent TTI, and for the select signal 205. In another embodiment, the UE continues to use antenna Tx2, unless the BS directs the UE to switch to another subset of antennas.
Multiple Antenna Subset Selection
In the examples below, we describe how antenna selection can be implemented in a UE with two RF chains and four transmit antennas. With two RF chains, the reference signals of two antennas are sent simultaneously in a FDM or CDM manner as described above. The reference signal sub-carriers for the different antennas are shown using two different patterns.
As before, we describe antenna selection using the AS signals or the broadband sounding reference signals.
Antenna Training for One RF Chain and Four Transmit Antennas
An embodiment for one RF chain and four antennas as shown in
As shown in
Note that the BS updates its selection decision and feeds the decision back while estimating the channels for the different antennas. In one embodiment, the BS only feed back its final decision, without incremental selection updates. In this case, the feedback to use Tx2 is absent, and the UE transmits the third TTI using Tx1.
Then, the BS can determine and compare the channel estimates from all the four transmit antennas and feeds back its selection decision to the UE, e.g., Tx3 1205. The UE continues to transmit data packets from antenna Tx1, while waiting for the selection decision, and switches to antenna Tx3 thereafter.
Alternatively as shown in
Using AS Packets
Stand Alone AS Packets
In addition to the embodiments described above, the antenna selection process can also use an antenna selection (AS) packet 1400 as shown in
As shown in
Piggybacking AS Training
Alternatively as shown in
Antenna Selection Methods
The UE also transmits 1630 an AS signal, as described above, using an unselected antenna, e.g., Tx2. The sending of the AS signal can be periodic every k TTIs, or on demand. The AS signal is carried in a short block of the packet, or a subsequent data packet. The AS signal can be a FDM or CDM signal. As described herein, the AS signal can even be a low overhead signal. If the signal is a FDM signals, then low overhead implies a smaller number of signal sub-carriers. For CDM signals, low overhead signals have reduced power.
In response to receiving the data packet and the AS signal, the BS estimates the channel and selects an antenna, and transmits the selection to the UE in step 1640. In the case of CDM signals, the BS can also reassign the carrier frequencies of the resource blocks used by the UE. Then, after receiving 1650 the selection, and perhaps the RB assignment, the UE switches to the selected antenna for transmitting sequent packets.
If the antenna selection is on demand, the selection process can be initiated by either the UE or BS based on the SINR, MCS, or HARQ history.
Therefore, in one embodiment of the invention, the antennas are switched substantially between the symbols. That is, the switching can take place at the end of the block of the previous symbol, or at the beginning of the CP of the next symbol.
The four ways include: switching entirely within an LB/SB used to send signals, and use CP 1710 and LB or SB data part for switching—1701; switching using CP of LB/SB used to send pilot tones and CP of adjacent LB—1702; switching using CP of LB/SB used to send pilot tones and CP of adjacent LB—1703; and switching using CP of adjacent LBs and not using the CP of the LB/SB used to send pilot tones—1704. Of these four methods, the first method, in which the LB/SB that contains pilot tones for transmission, is used for the switching times leads to the least loss in performance because data LBs are not affected.
Reduced Antenna Sounding RS Overhead
It is also possible to reduce the overhead of antenna selection by reducing the frequency at which the AS RS is transmitted. In addition, the sounding reference signal can be transmitted even when no data are transmitted. Furthermore, the base station can transmit its decision about which antenna the UE should use any time, including instances when the UE has not transmitted the sounding reference signal from the unselected antenna subset.
As shown in
One embodiment of the invention described below reduces the antenna sounding overhead when the sounding RS is used as AS RS.
As shown in
The advantage of this scheme is that the eNodeB can estimate the channel for the selected antenna more frequently. This is often the optimal antenna when the UE is moving slowly, or not at all. In both of the above mechanisms, the eNodeB can know a priori when the unselected antenna transmits the sounding RS.
As shown in
In the following, we describe various adaptive antenna selection schemes, and system-level simulation results with and without frequency domain scheduling over different sounding RS usage parameters.
The simulation parameters are given in Table 1.
Number of carriers per RB
Sounding RS location
1st long block
Number of LBs per TTI
Number of UEs per BS (cell)
6-ray typical urban
Number of transmit (UE) antennas
Number of transmit RF chains
Number of receiver (eNodeB) antennas
Normalized distance between transmit antennas
Variance of angle of departure
Spatial correlation of eNodeB (receive) antennas
Number of contiguous RBs assigned to a UE
Fixed RB assignment
Alternately Sounding the Two Antennas
We first consider the case in which the sounding RS is transmitted from the two antennas in an alternating manner as described above. The transmission interval of the sounding RS is set to either 2 ms or 10 ms.
The gains of adaptive antenna selection experienced by the user over single antenna selection are summarized in Table 2. The SNR gain experienced by UE with adaptive antenna selection capability over a UE with single transmit antenna for a two TTI sounding interval.
2 TTI Sounding interval
SNR CDF point
The gains of adaptive antenna selection experienced by the user equipment over single antenna selection are summarized in Table 3. In Table 3, the SNR gain experienced by a UE with adaptive antenna selection capability over a UE with a single transmit antenna for the TTI sounding interval.
10 TTI Sounding interval
SNR CDF point
In all cases, we see that the performance of the UE with adaptive antenna switching capability, measured in terms of the SNR its link experiences, significantly improves.
Reduced Overhead Antenna Sounding
We now consider the case in which the sounding RS from the selected antenna is transmitted less often from the unselected antenna. The transmission interval of the sounding RS is 2 ms. Sending the sounding RS from the unselected antenna less frequently, e.g., in only one out of five instances, has negligible loss in performance. Even adaptive antenna selection based on the other more extreme cases, in which the sounding RS is sent from the unselected antenna in one out of ten, or one out of fifteen instances, still results in significant performance gains.
The embodiments of the invention provide for antenna selection in the uplink from user equipment to a base station in a MIMO network, where the number of RF chains in the UE is less than the number of antennas. The invention also provides means for selecting antennas adaptively.
Although the invention has been described by way of examples of preferred embodiments, it is to be understood that various other adaptations and modifications may be made within the spirit and scope of the invention. Therefore, it is the object of the appended claims to cover all such variations and modifications as come within the true spirit and scope of the invention.
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|U.S. Classification||370/332, 370/336, 375/299, 375/259, 455/562.1, 455/127.1, 370/329, 455/101, 375/133, 370/328, 375/267, 455/69, 370/330|
|International Classification||H03C7/02, H04L27/00, H04W4/00|
|Cooperative Classification||H04B7/0691, H04L5/0023, H04L25/0228, H04L25/0204, H04B7/061|
|European Classification||H04B7/06B2F, H04L25/02C1, H04L5/00A3C, H04B7/06H2, H04L25/02C7C|
|Feb 28, 2010||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: MITSUBISHI ELECTRIC RESEARCH LABORATORIES, INC.,MA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:TEO, KOON HOO;MEHTA, NEELESH B.;ZHANG, JINYUN;SIGNING DATES FROM 20090922 TO 20090924;REEL/FRAME:024003/0789
Owner name: MITSUBISHI ELECTRIC RESEARCH LABORATORIES, INC., M
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:TEO, KOON HOO;MEHTA, NEELESH B.;ZHANG, JINYUN;SIGNING DATES FROM 20090922 TO 20090924;REEL/FRAME:024003/0789